If we don't get a handle on this state-sponsored oppression, Snowden warns, “it will be turn key tyranny.”
Living in a time and place when so many people are afraid to even state an opinion, much less take action to do what's right, his courage is remarkable and commendable. When I hear people accuse him of treason, of undermining our true freedom and security, I think, really? It's not the sheeple, the politicians, the spooks? It's the whistle-blowers?
Not so heartening was reading — once again — the same misguided people blaming monk seals for the loss of fish around the main Hawaiian Islands. Really? It's not the sewage, the injection wells, the pollution, the sedimentation, coral diseases, climate change, over-harvesting, poor resource management and the overall decline of marine life? It's the critically endangered seals?
Talk about blaming the victim.
It's especially sad to see people taking the stance that monk seals are not “native” — like the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands aren't part of the archipelago?
I understand where the push-back is coming from. Frankly, the feds blew it big time with their misinformation, their weird, stilted way of conducting public meetings that allowed no official responses, their plans to bring young seals down here, their poor inter-agency coordination that resulted in a deluge of proposed management plans that left people understandably worried that fishing and other subsistence and recreational activities would be curtailed — a fear that is validated each time a rope is put up on a beach and locals are scolded by a haole monk seal watch volunteer.
I think a lot of the animosity is misplaced resistance to the growing sense of being displaced from one's homeland, the marginalization that is part and parcel of colonization disease. For some people, it's easier and safer to lash out against a seal than to rage against the American machine. Or as the old saying goes, shit rolls down hill.
And finally, I had to snicker a little upon reading Mayor Bernard Carvalho trying to reassure southsiders that there's value in spending $625,000 to update that region's community plan:
“We cannot stop growth — remember that — I know that for a fact but we can surely manage growth to determine how we’re going to grow, where we’re going to grow, and where we would like to see development or not,” Carvalho, Jr. said.
Oh, really? And should we look at your Administration's bungled implementation of the TVR law as an example of how well you manage growth? Or are you trying to tell us that vacation rentals have proliferated in residential communities because that's where you and your campaign donors wanted to see development and growth occur, even though the residents did not?
All I know is that hundreds of vacation rentals were never part of the North Shore Development Plan. Yet there they are. And in three months, maybe, the planning department will have a plan to enforce against just one.
Really? That's the best you can do?